Halep Hits Back To End Lisicki's Dream
Published July 02, 2014 12:14
With the pre-tournament favorites tumbling like dominoes, Halep went into her quarterfinal with last year's runner-up Lisicki as the highest seed left in the draw. Despite her lofty ranking, Halep flew under the radar in the first week, as, apart from a first round outing on Centre, her tidy baseline game was consigned to the outside courts.
The Turning Point
Halep made an inauspicious start to her Centre Court bow, dropping serve to fall 2-0 behind. When Lisicki stretched this lead to 4-1, Halep looked in danger of being blown away. However, the Romanian is made of stern stuff, and when an opportunity to get back into the match presented itself, she grasped it with both hands.
At 4-2, Lisicki's fearsome first serve went walkabout, Halep jumping on the second delivery with gusto to break back. From here it was one-way traffic, the No.3 seed running rings around Lisicki with her precise hitting and elegant movement, rattling off the next 10 games as she cantered across the finish line, completing a 6-4, 6-0 win in under an hour.
"I was a little bit lost on court. But only in the beginning," Halep said. "Then I tried to keep the rallies going more, just taking it point by point. I did really well and I came back very well. I found a way to play my style - I stayed very aggressive, very close to the baseline, and I stuck to my tactics. I opened the court very well and used the angles when I could."
Meeting Halep for a place in the final will be No.13 seed Eugenie Bouchard, who reached her third consecutive Grand Slam semifinal with a straight set win over Angelique Kerber. Halep won her only previous meeting with Bouchard, coming out on top in three sets at Indian Wells earlier this year.